I spend as little time as possible in Costco. I even congratulate myself on getting in and out of there in less than 20 minutes.

Although I appreciate that it's a job for the folks who do it, I hate the sample tables at the end of, and sometimes in the middle of the aisles. I'm not a fan of eating in a warehouse and I am particularly antagonistic to the other shoppers who create bottlenecks while they scarf down little paper cups of who knows what.

I just want to get through!

So I've learned to choose my times and days. For the most part I'm successful and manage to bypass these intrusions into the aisles.

One day I was doing the legal speed limit between the shelves, executed a perfect turn around a corner and almost knocked down a woman dressed all in white, from her shoes to her hairnet.

I guiltily accepted the cracker she offered me after I apologised.

I've been buying the crackers since.

Because I can afford to drive to and shop at Costco I sometimes feel guilty about walking by panhandlers in Toronto.  This is not the space to describe the roots of that guilt and how skilled I can be at avoiding it.  But part of it stems from seldom carrying change or small bills anymore.  I literally have nothing to give.

When I do have loonies and toonies in my pocket, I have been training myself to slow down.  Instead of just doing a drop and go I pause, sometimes say something, sometimes don't, and look that person in the eyes if they will tolerate it. Just to acknowledge our mutual humanity.

Jesus taught his followers a little bit about what it means to be human, and to treat others humanly. At the time of his death they had another lesson in inhumanity.

Somehow, 3 days or 30 years or 3 centuries or coming up on 3 millennia later, we learn that inhumanity doesn't get the last word. There is new life to be found, new loving mysteries to explore.

Slow down for a moment. Look at each other.  Imagine that the strangers you meet on the road have hope to offer you, or that you have hope to share with them.